Can pre-treatment improve germination and early plant growth?

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,066
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
In the wee hours this morning when I should have been sleeping, I decided to do an experiment with my next seeding: I will plant several different types of seeds, using 4 different methods.

Control group: planted in the typical fashion. Pre moistened Pro-mix, seeds planted dry, and tended in usual manner.

The following groups will be planted in same manner as control group after they have been soaked.
Group #1. Pre soak x 2 - 3 hours in Epsom salt solution @ 2 TBSP/qt. H2O.
Group #2. Pre soak x 2 - 3 hours in [email protected] 2 TBSP per qt. H2O.
Group #3. Scarify and pre soak in Epsom salt solution. This will only be done with peppers.
Group #4. Scarify and pre soak in H2O2 solution. This will only be done with peppers.

After sprouting, all plants will be treated in my usual grow out fashion.
 

oregonkat

Crowing
7 Years
Oct 5, 2012
2,003
2,829
377
Southern Oregon
In the wee hours this morning when I should have been sleeping, I decided to do an experiment with my next seeding: I will plant several different types of seeds, using 4 different methods.

Control group: planted in the typical fashion. Pre moistened Pro-mix, seeds planted dry, and tended in usual manner.

The following groups will be planted in same manner as control group after they have been soaked.
Group #1. Pre soak x 2 - 3 hours in Epsom salt solution @ 2 TBSP/qt. H2O.
Group #2. Pre soak x 2 - 3 hours in [email protected] 2 TBSP per qt. H2O.
Group #3. Scarify and pre soak in Epsom salt solution. This will only be done with peppers.
Group #4. Scarify and pre soak in H2O2 solution. This will only be done with peppers.

After sprouting, all plants will be treated in my usual grow out fashion.
Ooooo you have reminded me that it is time for seed starting... what is the epsom salt solution supposed to do?
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,066
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
Tonight, I started the seeding process. I have (12) 6 packs. Each 6 pack will be seeded with seeds that have been:

1. planted dry
2. soaked in water
3. soaked in Epsom salt at the rate of 1/8 tsp/cup H20
4. *scarified and then soaked in above solution
5. soaked in Hydrogen Peroxide at the rate of 1.5 tsp./cup H20
6. *scarified and then soaked in above solution

* depending on the seed variety. I found that some of the seeds really took a beating when I scarified them. So, I did not do so with the smaller seeds.

Purpose: to see if pre soaking in MgSO4 or H2O2 will hasten sprouting or improve germination rate.

After all seeds are planted, I'll load the spread sheet that I've started to track the results.
 

RWise

Songster
7 Years
Dec 25, 2012
1,270
1,011
216
Oakhurst Oklahoma
I used a bleach/water solution on some 10YO tomato seed I saved, and lost/found. I got 100% germination from them! Some say this only disinfects, others say it enhances germination, IDK but, I did get good results from it.
 

lazy gardener

Crossing the Road
7 Years
Nov 7, 2012
27,615
27,066
917
CENTRAL MAINE zone 4B
What was your solution mix? I have no doubt that it would enhance germination b/c it would eat away some of the seed coat.

Preliminary findings: some of my seeds did better with scarification or the MgSO4 or H2O2 soak, but not enough to really make a difference. Hope to finish my chart in a couple of weeks.
 

RWise

Songster
7 Years
Dec 25, 2012
1,270
1,011
216
Oakhurst Oklahoma
quote
Bleach Treatment
Make a solution with one part bleach (5.25% hypochlorite) and four parts water. Add a few drops of dish soap. Add seed to the solution and allow it to sit for one minute, stirring occasionally. Seed should be able to float freely so that all surfaces come in contact with the solution. Pour the solution through a thin mesh sieve or a cheese cloth. Rinse the seed in cool running tap water for 5 minutes. At this point seed can be directly planted or dried completely on a screen, then stored. Direct planting after treatment is preferable.

Bleach seed treatment can be used on any kind of seed including tomato. It will remove pathogens from the surface of the seed coat but not from within the seed. This means for bacterial canker, bleach treatment only partially reduces the risk of infection from contaminated seed./quote

Source
http://blog-yard-garden-news.extension.umn.edu/2016/02/start-with-clean-tomato-seed-and.html

Or google "bleach germinating tomato seeds"
 

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